Rents are double or triple what they were before the storm. Many families are still shut out of their former homes in public housing. Homeowners are struggling with huge insurance costs. They face a gap between the cost of rebuilding and their insurance payouts and the Road Home grants. Several people I spoke with said the grant money they had been promised never materialized. As we toured the areas still affected by Katrina, it was very powerful. We came upon what looked like a field you might see here in Perkasie, only under closer inspection you could see the cement slabs where houses had been and families had lived. One sight that stayed with me was a set of steps behind which was a cement slab with concrete pillars that had supported a house. It looked like steps leading to a cemetery - the death of a family's dream.
I was impressed by the spirit of the people we met. We were warmly welcomed and individuals were willing to share their stories. As Rev. Boutee, Pastor of St. John Baptist our partner church, said in his Sunday message, "It's not the end of the road it's a bend in the road."